I have never been thin. Since my earliest memory, “normal-size” clothing has not fit me. I remember being seven, distressed that I had to shop the tired floral prints of the “husky” sizes. I remember the day I was told that I was too big to wear two-piece swimsuits. I remember that I stopped swimming entirely because no swim suit fit comfortably.
I remember wearing trendy clothes that were too tight in middle school because I wanted to wear the pretty outfits all the other girls wore. I remember crying after a day of shopping because everything looked bad on me. I remember averting my eyes from every magazine cover so that I wouldn’t feel negatively about my body. I remember all the jokes and negative comments made about fat women on social media, some by my friends. I remember being told by a doctor when I was fourteen that I would never be loved or beautiful unless I lost weight. I remember being ashamed to even exist. I remember when I nearly didn’t try out to be my marching band’s drum major because I was so afraid that I couldn’t be successful because I was a fat woman. I believed that I had no value to anyone because I wasn’t slender, but I am not defined by my weight. I am defined by my actions.
I no longer believe that one body type has more value than another. Large or small; pear-shaped, apple-shaped, or hourglass figured: none of it matters. The only thing that matters is what you do with the one life that’s been given to you. I used to be so upset if someone called me fat. I now believe that “fat” is not an insult, just an adjective. Yes, my body has fat. My body has more fat than most bodies do. . The size on the tag of my clothing does not determine what I can or cannot do. I believe that I am more than fat. I believe that I’m also funny, intelligent and caring. I believe that I am hundreds of adjectives in addition to “fat.” I certainly hope that “fat” isn’t the most important thing I am in the eyes of other people. I believe that beauty is not a size. I believe that there is more to life than constantly struggling to lose weight. I believe that “fat” does not mean “ugly” or “unlovable.” I believe that the skin I am in is beautiful, exactly how it is. I believe that there is no such thing as an ugly body or an ugly person. I believe in spreading body positivity instead of body negativity. After all, why hate the only body that will ever be yours? This I believe.